Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition (PlayStation 4) Review

By William Lowery 19.04.2017 1

Review for Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition on PlayStation 4

It's no secret that since the debut of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, remasters and re-releases of older titles have become more frequent than they ever were before. Though some might view most of them as unnecessary, one thing they do provide is the opportunity to give new players the chance to experience a game he or she might have missed out on when the game was first released. Originally released back in 2011, Bulletstorm was a success critically, but not financially - yet, with the help of publisher Gearbox, developer People Can Fly is giving gamers a second chance to experience one of the seventh generation's hidden gems.

In the not-too-distant future, next Sunday A.D., a space pirate by the name of Grayson Hunt is travelling the cosmos looking for ships to raid and avoiding the numerous bounties that have been placed on them. Before he ended up in such circumstances, Grayson and his men used to be part of a black ops squad known as Dead Echo, led by the ruthless General Sarrano, but during one of their assignments, they learned that the people the general had them assassinating were not terrorists, but innocent civilians, so they abandoned their positions and fled into the deep reaches of space. Luckily for Grayson, his ship stumbles across Sarrano's, and in an act of desperation, he charges his ship into the enemy's, resulting in the two to crash land on a planet filled with murderers, mutants, and other nasties.

Screenshot for Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition on PlayStation 4

What follows is a revenge tale that is both serious and hilarious. While the plot features twists and turns, some of which are quite dark, the tension is alleviated by the number of gags and funny lines that are spouted off by the characters, both good and bad. At times, the writing can be very juvenile, especially with the number of jokes about male anatomy, yet a good chunk of the humour is very entertaining. Add to that some memorable characters, including the rowdy Grayson Hunt, his friend Ishi, and the foul-mouthed Sarrano, and the story is quite enjoyable, except for one noticeable issue, the game's ending, which is both abrupt and desperately hints at a sequel that may or may not happen.

On the surface, Bulletstorm seems like a standard first-person shooter with a unique setting, but it isn't before long that the game introduces its core mechanic: skillshots. This system is what brings the gameplay to life; rather than kill enemies through body and head shots, the game encourages players to get creative with the slaughtering via this system. For example, if a foe is near exposed rebar or a giant cactus, he can be grabbed with the energy leash and kicked into the object for an easy 100 hundred points. Some are basic, while many require a certain degree of thought in regards to properly pulling the skillshot off. Fortunately, the game's arsenal of guns will help make the job fun.

Screenshot for Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition on PlayStation 4

The selection of firearms ranges from standard weapons such as an assault rifle, revolver, and shotgun, to more inventive guns such as one that lobs bouncing, explosive orbs, or a sniper rifle that fires rounds that can be guided into the enemy. The best one, though, is a spear gun that launches drills that pierces foes and sends them flying into walls, the sky, or their comrades. Points earned from skillshots can then be used at drop pods to buy ammo, increase bullet capacity, or unlock a firearm's special shot, which normally involves disintegration. However, Grayson can only hold three weapons at a time, one of which is always the assault rifle, but a special mode allows him to use the entire arsenal. More on that later.

Bulletstorm is an entertaining experience through and through, featuring plenty of exciting set-piece moments in addition to creative shooting. However, there are some aspects of this game that haven't particularly aged well since its original release. The biggest issue is its linearity. Although the combat zones are well-designed, the remainder of each stage consists of nothing but painfully cramped hallways that lead to an elevator or lever that must be activated to proceed. Additionally, Grayson's AI controlled teammates always tend to act like the leading man and run ahead of him towards the next part of the stage.

Screenshot for Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition on PlayStation 4

In addition to the single-player campaign, there are a few extra modes available in the form of Echoes, Anarchy, and the Overkill campaign. Echoes is the game's arcade mode; in it, gamers go through different sections of the campaign, with the overall goal being to beat the stage as quick as possible while amassing a large amount of points through skillshots. It's a fine selection, but doesn't stand out as particularly memorable, though a second option, Ultimate Echoes, puts parameters on each stage that force one to rethink their tactics each time. Meanwhile, Anarchy is a co-operative affair in which up to four players work together to kill waves of enemies. Finally, Overkill is the equivalent of new game plus, as Grayson is equipped with every single gun, which is good for those who didn't perform all 131 skillshots.

Grayson Hunt isn't the only one who gets to kill with style; available to those who pre-ordered the game or downloaded it separately, everyone's favourite symbol of manliness, Duke Nukem, gets to join the fray. Unfortunately, his inclusion in Bulletstorm is somewhat disappointing. Although it's cool seeing Duke in Gray's position and hearing his deep, growly voice, provided courtesy of Jon St. Jon, not much else is done with him. No explanation is provided as to how he ended up where he is, a fact Duke himself brings up early on, and there aren't any weapons exclusively available to him, which is a severely missed opportunity. It's best recommended that he is saved for the Overkill campaign option, so that way, the full arsenal is available from the get-go.

Screenshot for Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition on PlayStation 4

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

Even six years after its original release, Bulletstorm is still a wickedly fun shooter whose greatest strength is its skillshot system. With it, the combat becomes not just fun, but also quite creative, since it rewards players who think outside the box in regards to killing enemies. Fortunately, the story, minus its cliff-hanger ending, is surprisingly good, considering it could have been only a paper-thin plot for which to hang the gameplay on. Although the title does lack replay value and the extra modes won't hold one's interest for long, the core meat of the game is its biggest, and greatest, strength.

Developer

People Can Fly

Publisher

Gearbox Software

Genre

First Person Shooter

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

too fucking expensive for a game that is essentially a bargain bin title.

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